Babruisk: Case closed, complaint ignored

2014 2014-04-04T16:28:28+0300 2014-04-04T16:31:14+0300 en The Human Rights Center “Viasna” The Human Rights Center “Viasna”
The Human Rights Center “Viasna”

Babruisk freelance journalist Maryna Malchanava received a letter from the Prosecutor's Office, saying that an administrative case against her had been closed.

The journalist was summoned to the police department after covering an antiwar picket. There, she learned that she was being prosecuted for violation of Article 23.34 of the Administrative Code “violation of the order of organizing and holding mass events”. In this regard, she decided to send a complaint against the police to local Prosecutor’s Office.

Maryna Malchanava says that she views the charges as harassment for her work as a journalist. She asked the prosecutor to assess the facts from the point of view of Article 198 of the Criminal Code “Interfering with lawful professional activities of journalists”.

However, the response from the Prosecutor’s Office only says that on March 19 it was decided to close the administrative case against her. And it provides no comments on the action of police Major Siarhei Rudzko, who questioned the journalist.

“Thus, the complaint returned to me unanswered,” says Maryna Malchanava. “I was told that my complaint was actually a “complaint against the decision to dismiss the case”. Also, the reply says that if I want my complaint to be considered, I need to pay the state fee. Will I have to pay this fee? No! If I believed, at least a little, in a positive result, I would have done it, but I have no belief in justice, unfortunately,” said the journalist.